SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- In one San Diego neighborhood alone, around a half dozen residents have reported seeing rattlesnakes dangerously close to their front doors.
The Department of Fish and Wildlife says avoid tall grasses and heavy brush if you can. And if your kids are playing in snake country — ditch sandals for a pair of boots.
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“I like to take my dogs out this back door, and I had the surprise of my life,” said Janet Escobedo. “I heard my husband shout, ‘stay in the house, stay in the house!’ but of course, I wanted to check and see what it was.”
Thankfully a curious Janet left her dog Magnus inside.
"He started shouting, and I said, I'm getting a picture of this thing.”
The rattlesnake was just a few feet from the family’s back door at the Holy Angels Church in Serra Mesa.
"If I would have had the door open like I usually do when I let the dogs out, I was thinking, it's going to come into the house.”
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Several people in just the last month have posted in the Nextdoor app, reporting rattlesnake sightings and reminding neighbors to be vigilant when outside.
The Escobedo’s home and most of Serra Mesa back up to a canyon.
"This is called rattlesnake ridge right here, so lots and lots of places for snakes to come up," Escobedo said. "Everybody knows to be on the lookout and we’ve actually found snakes on Sunday when the kids are playing on the playground.”
Most bites happen between April and October, according to the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
The department points out that dogs are at a big risk, because they hold their noses to the ground while investigating the outdoors.
And as for Escobedo's snake on the front porch? Turns out snakes like to crawl on the edge of buildings where they’re protected on one side — so be careful when stepping over doorsteps, too.
"Just watch where you’re walking, because if I hadn’t have been paying attention," Escobedo said. "I would have walked right into this thing.”
If you are bitten by a rattlesnake, experts advise that you stay calm, take off watches or anything constricting and get to a hospital as soon as possible.